Springtime Mariners nametags

Yeah, come on, it’s spring. All things are possible. This is the year, man, it’s gonna happen…

Twenty guys?

Exactly half the forty-man Spring Training roster has never dirtied their cleats in a Mariner big-league uniform. Here’s a list of every guy looking to make his future with your Seattle Mariners this year. Even some of our twenty returnees will have you (and their teammates) scratching your head going, “wait, who?” Continue reading “Springtime Mariners nametags”

Change is done, change is comin’…

Oh baby, Jerry DiPoto. Look what you done.

“Jerry DiPoto is a nut job…” …but he means that in the most nicest way…

Dude in the video likes Vogelbach. Playin’ in the Dirt is not sold. But there’s some solid analysis here.

Fifty-four men took the field in a Mariner uniform in 2016. Just twenty of them, exactly half of the current forty-man roster, are in camp in Spring 2017 as part of the big-league squad. Continue reading “Change is done, change is comin’…”

Ex-Mariner of the Year

Pitchers and Catchers report today!

In celebration, and you know we celebrate this day every year, Playin’ in the Dirt tips a cap to one amazing man. A man who you just have to believe is most glad for a mind-boggling trade.

Second-year pitcher Mike Montgomery had appeared in 32 games for the Ms in 2016, posting a 2.34 ERA and looking strong. On July 20, he went to the Cubs. Three months later, he was in the playoffs. Continue reading “Ex-Mariner of the Year”

Not today, Satan

Just decided to dink around a little bit here. My man Chuck Wendig, a supreme writer and blogger and e-mentor, does a Flash Fiction Challenge every Friday. I rarely take part. This week was intriguing, though. Pick a three-word title from a list of his readers’ suggestions. My suggestion didn’t make his list, which didn’t piss me off. I chose the closest one to it. And I included my title in the text. Your challenge is to find it. Good luck.

There is such blindness that goes along with sexual abuse, and that’s one of a million enabling factors. So this thousand-word essay attacks just one of those blind spots. Trust me, it’s fiction. But it addresses a theme that’s rife in both Diamonds and Dirt and the upcoming sequel Tenth Inning.

For those books, I still need a publisher. But for now, here’s that essay…

Not today, Satan

Son of a bitch. Another mob. These people are relentless. They need pitchforks, torches, buckets of tar. I’ll be your metaphorical Frankenstein again today, day after day. Someday you’ll go away.

Hey, I’m getting paid for this. For once I know who the good guys are, and it’s not that crew of pathetic vindictive punks. Continue reading “Not today, Satan”

Leann’s Brown Eyes

No sign of spring yet in our town.

The eyes got me.

They weren’t the first thing we saw. The first thing was a grocery cart, packed with stuff. And a figure hunched alone on a stool, wrapped in layers. And the cardboard sign that turns so many people away.

“Would you give me $5 or a blanket?” is all it said. But the images swirled, angry faces, righteous people. How often has every one of us claimed there shouldn’t be any begging, there’s plenty of help available, dammit there’s free food everywhere you look and what sucker would give these beggars any money when they just buy booze or go off to the casino.

But we needed to talk, a couple old well-fed dudes volunteering for the government, doing the annual Point-in-time Count with a clipboard and a backpack full of fresh socks and granola bars. Continue reading “Leann’s Brown Eyes”

The shrink who said I’d never write

Yeah, that’s the guy.

He was joking, of course.

And I took it that way. Just to be clear about that part. In fact we got a good laugh about it.

But the joking came after a lecture to a packed room full of writers about childhood trauma’s effect on our adult creative abilities. His premise, based on research, was that writing and other artistic pursuits help to maintain sanity for adults who experienced trauma as children. Continue reading “The shrink who said I’d never write”

Who are these guys?

Don’t we have bigger problems?

What kind of person gets elected to do their people’s business in the legislature, then spends their first days in office trumpeting about keeping their wives and daughters safe from perverts in a bathroom because after all, penises and vaginas and whatnot? Seriously this is happening.

Check it out right here.

Truly, how are these people so fixated on where people pee? Why is this so important to them and what ogres are they chasing? We have schools in this state that are under court mandate to clean up their act. We have roads, bridges, ferries that need attention.
Continue reading “Who are these guys?”

Let Him Sit

photo: Sports Illustrated
flag and fortune: author

Last week I had dinner with an old friend. We ate upscale Chinese with a couple craft beers to wash it down. It was good. We’d hardly seen each other since high school.

We met in seventh grade. It was 1968, when Americans woke up every morning pissed off. Racism, patriotism, Vietnam, drugs, flag burning, police brutality, women’s lib, air pollution. Pick the issue and someone started screaming insults.

A lot like this election year.

We got up to leave and I finally brought it up. “Y’know, I gotta say, about this Colin Kaepernick thing…” Continue reading “Let Him Sit”

A Monkey Never Cramps

There’s nothing but joy in this man’s game.

Munenori Kawasaki is remembered by Mariner fans as the bouncy Tigger® of their 2012 infield, a grin super-glued to his face saying how lucky he felt standing there, spikes caked at last with Major League dirt.

Who cares if he hit .192 in only 104 at-bats, appearing in less than half the Mariners’ games? That smile stayed on his face on the bench, lighting up the dugout. TV cameras loved the guy, check him out, what a great influence on his teammates, slapping backs, cheering on every pitch, just happy to be there. Continue reading “A Monkey Never Cramps”

My Oh My, it just continues!

Apologies to Dave Niehaus, but it was all I could think of. It continues. My oh my, it just continues.


Photo: Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports
Hey P, why the mask? Don’t want mama to see you on TV?
I don’t blame you.

People wonder why it’s so important to write about pedophilia.

Why? Because Penn State University just orgasmed all over themselves celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of Joe Paterno’s first game.

The same Joe Paterno who was allegedly informed in 1976 of sexual abuse against a child by one of his assistants, then let decades of the same thing go by. Football was more important.

The same Joe Paterno who admitted, just before he died, that he knew about it and should have done something about it.

Why? Because ten bare-chested young men took to the front row of Saturday’s game against Temple, shoulder to shoulder, spelling out JOEPATERNO in Nittany Blue body paint.

Nobody’s spelling out the names of those decades of victims. Continue reading “My Oh My, it just continues!”